The Real American Crisis: Executive Power
“Those who would surrender essential liberty for temporary security, will, in the end deserve neither liberty nor security.” — Benjamin Franklin
“Never let a good crisis go to waste”– Rahm Emanuel
When I hear people — even elected officials — say that America is a democracy, I just cringe. This is a real indicator as to why we need to have civics taught, not just in our schools, but to adults. America is a Constitutional Republic, its fundamentals being the rule of law and individual rights.
However, what we are witnessing, at warp speed, is a “fundamental transformation” of America into a constitutional monarchy. Now, you may ask what the difference is? Well, it comes back to our lesson in civics. We have three co-equal branches of government: the legislative, executive, and judicial. If you wish to know the basis for this governmental structure, I suggest you read “The Spirit of the Laws” by French political philosopher, Montesquieu.
In structuring our government — the result of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 — our founding Fathers created this constitutional Republic designing the enumerated duties and powers to each respective branch, legislative being the most powerful. However, there exists a system of checks and balances in order to maintain a “balance of power” between these respective branches. It is different from an Article V Constitution of States.
Sadly, the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, by executive order, just eliminated the 1776 Project, basically admitting that he disregards the establishment of these United States of America. That is a very critical decision because the Declaration of Independence establishes the sovereignty of the individual citizen over the institution of government. That incredible document decreed that our unalienable individual rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness do not emanate from man, meaning government. Those rights are endowed to us by our Creator, the Judeo-Christian God.
What is happening now is that we have a government, namely the executive branch, using so-called “emergencies” to suspend, supersede, and usurp individual rights. Hence, we find ourselves in a situation where the new president of our Constitutional Republic is not seeking to govern us according to the rule of law, rather he is ruling by Executive Order, 40+ and counting, as of this writing.
Executive Orders are not a means to an end to implement an ideological agenda, which should be done by the legislative process. America, or any of our sovereign States, are not to be ruled by order, mandate, edict, or decree, yet this is exactly what is happening.
Executive Orders are not a means to an end to implement an ideological agenda, which should be done by the legislative process.
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Here is a case in point. Last year, globally, there were some 1.5 million deaths related to COVID-19. Last year, globally, there were over 42 million preborn babies murdered in the womb. What did Joe Biden do? He decided by Executive Order that US taxpayer dollars would go overseas to support countries in continuing the heinous practice of dismembering preborn babies in the womb. The enumerated power of appropriating the tax dollars of US citizens belongs to the legislative branch, that is in Article I of our Constitution, not Article II which enumerates the powers of the executive branch.
Sadly, even here in Texas, we are experiencing a similar issue: our own governor decided unilaterally to appropriate taxpayer funds — $275 million — to a corporation, MTX, for contact tracing without legislative approval. Heck, the Texas legislature was not even called back into session on the issue.
The second quote in the introduction to this week’s missive explains the perspective of the government: “never let a good crisis go to waste.” That means with each “emergency” declared, we find ourselves losing more of our individual rights.
Think about the creation of FISA courts after 9/11, and how they were inappropriately used against the incoming Trump administration. The FISA courts are a violation of our 4th Amendment rights. Consider after the shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Florida — clearly attributable to government failures — but out of that crisis we got Red Flag Laws, which are a violation of our 2nd and 4th Amendment rights.
And, of course, we are living the most recent “emergency” with the COVID-19 issue. I must admit, 1.5 million versus 42 million dead in one year, which one is the real emergency? Also, we know, definitively, that COVID-19 has an overall 99.96 percent recovery rate. Preborn babies in the womb have a 0 percent recovery rate when forceps enter into the safe space of a mother’s womb to dismember the child.
COVID-19 has a 99.96 percent recovery rate. Preborn babies have a 0 percent recovery rate when forceps enter into the safe space of a mother's womb to dismember the child.
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The COVID-19 scare was leveraged using the best-known means by the government to consolidate power: the threat of death. All of a sudden, elected officials, executives, made the unilateral declaration as to who and what was “essential.” As Franklin articulated, the most essential quality in America is liberty. However, executives decided that they would issue mandates, edicts, orders, and decrees to restrain our individual liberty. Heck, dads were arrested for playing with their children at playgrounds. A paddle-boarder was arrested for paddling alone on the open ocean. Businesses were told to shut down. Churches were told to shut their doors, a violation of the first liberty, freedom of religion and the free exercise thereof. We were ordered to wear masks, now some are insinuating we need to be ordered to wear three masks. None of these executive actions went through the legislative process.
During the 2020 election cycle, executives made decisions to change election law. Here in Texas, our governor decided to extend early voting an additional week, without legislative consult or approval. In Dallas County, County Judge Clay Jenkins decreed that the “fear” of catching COVID-19 was a disability, and grounds for a mail-in ballot, a violation of Texas election law. We saw executives violate state election law in Georgia, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona, and Nevada, with no consequences.
It all goes back to an op-ed written by former US Attorney General, Eric Holder, on April 14, 2020, in Time magazine titled, “How the Coronavirus Should Permanently Change Elections in the United States.” And, what was the crux of his opinion? A pitch for universal mail-in ballots, completely different from the controlled electoral process of absentee ballots.
The bottom line is that we have government executives using “emergencies” to expand their powers. We are made to believe that we are more secure, when, in all actuality, as Franklin says, we have less liberty, and are less secure.
What must happen is that our legislatures, federal and state, must regain their enumerated powers. These legislatures must define what constitutes an “emergency” and ensure that our rule of law is followed. We cannot have state legislatures suspended, paralyzed, and locked out by not being called back into session as executives usurp their branch. If this continues, we may need to ask why we have legislatures?
I recall back in 2014, Barack Obama stated the following:
“We’re not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help they need. I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone. And I can use that pen to sign executive orders and take executive actions and administrative actions that move the ball forward in helping to make sure our kids are getting the best education possible (never mind he canceled the DC school voucher program in 2009), making sure that our businesses are getting the kind of support and help they need to grow and advance, to make sure that people are getting the skills that they need to get those jobs that our businesses are creating [regardless of how Obamacare hurt businesses].”
Obama would proclaim the same thing at his State of the Union address, and members of Congress stood and cheered. They were cheering monarchical despotism.
We are watching a continuation of Obama, his third term, with Joe Biden, ruling by Executive Order, not governing. All under the guise that Biden is doing what is best for America, like putting Americans out of work for a delusional ideological green energy agenda.
Americans and Texans, ask yourselves: do you wish to live in a Constitutional Republic as citizens? Or, would you prefer to be subjects in a monarchy being ruled by executive orders and actions?
Never forget, as Benjamin Franklin said, “it is a Republic, if you can keep it.”
Steadfast and Loyal,
LTC Allen B. West (Ret.)
Republican Party of Texas
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